Acadian Ventures 2022 Year in Review

Acadian Ventures
January 4, 2023

2022 was a bittersweet year.  We had an exceptional year at Acadian Ventures based on our key performance metrics, the growth of our assets under management (AUM), and the progress of our strategic goals to be the “go-to” early stage firm focused on the new world of work.  Broadly speaking, though, it was very tumultuous in the public and private markets over the last 12 months.  I wanted to share a few of our accomplishments over the last year…

Acadian Ventures Fund I is a top quartile fund

By all measures to gauge the performance of our firm – MOIC, TVPI, DPI, and IRR – our first fund has achieved top quartile performance based on benchmark data from Pitchbook.  As of Dec 31, 2022, our net IRR is 87.3%, MOIC is 2.8x and TVPI is 2.3x.  While public market indexes such as the S&P 500 dropped nearly 20%  and some venture funds lost more than half of their value, our total fund value increased by 23.9% in 2022. 

We distributed more capital back to our limited partners

The most important measure of our success is DPI or distribution to paid-in capital.  We are proud to return capital to our limited partners for the second year in a row.  In Q1 2022, our DPI was 0.4x and closed the year at approximately 0.3x (the decrease is based on deploying more capital through the year.)  In other words, we have already returned 30% of our “paid-in” capital) which is nearly unheard of, for a 2019 vintage fund.

We expanded our team including a new General Partner

We welcomed Thomas Otter as the second general partner in the firm.  Thomas brings tremendous experience from running product management at SAP SuccessFactors to serving on a number of public and private boards.  We have also started to build our world-class team including David Clarke, former CTO of Workday as a venture partner, and Ryan McQueeney to lead finance and operations.

We achieved 96% founders satisfaction

A key metric outside of our financial measures is “customer satisfaction” or more specifically gauging how our founders like working with us.  This year we achieved 96% founder satisfaction as measured by our annual net promoter score (NPS) survey.  One founder commented, “Acadian is by far and away the most helpful early-stage firm we've worked with. Incredibly helpful and kind team that's always in your corner, always there to help, and provides immense value and support.”

We made 14 investments and recognized one exit

We completed 11 new investments and 3 follow-on investments in the year.  You can find more about some of our investments and why we invested in Figures, Fifty, and TechWolf.  We are excited about our first investment in Africa which we hope to share more shortly.  We were also fortunate to increase our positions in a few portfolio companies that have been outperforming their metrics.  We also witnessed our fourth exit when Utmost, our 7th portfolio company in Fund I, was acquired by Beeline in October.  

We hosted our first in-person events

We were thrilled to bring together two events in 2022.  In September, we hosted our first Annual Gathering in Las Vegas, bringing together investors, founders, and industry executives.  In October, we hosted our inaugural Startup Summit in Paris, a half-day event discussing work in a post-COVID world with startups across Europe.

We launched Acadian Ventures Fund II

Last but certainly not least, we officially launched Acadian Ventures Fund II, a $40M early-stage venture capital fund.  In July, we completed the first close in Fund II (see Form D) and have already made 4 investments in the fund.  We will continue to execute on the same thesis (Future of Work) while building larger positions in our portfolio companies.

We expect more turbulence in 2023 but believe our companies are well positioned to take advantage of the challenges and opportunities.  We will be sharing more details on our recent performance and strategy for 2023 in our quarterly report later this month.

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